The traditional, upright lines of the 2010 Mercury Mariner and Mariner Hybrid disguise their actual personas: They're carlike crossovers. A Mariner makes no attempt to soften its lines, unlike such competitors as the Honda CR-V; it's an SUV from any angle. But the tasteful chrome grille and other fashion-forward design elements set it apart from the more pedestrian Ford Escape, with which it shares a platform.
Edmunds notes that the Mercury Mariner "isn't exactly the freshest face on the block, sharing as it does a nine-year-old platform with its Ford Escape sibling." Car and Driver also points out that "the design is old," calling the 2010 Mercury Mariners "square-jawed and truck-like compared to their relatively effete competition." Despite the vehicle's aged design, reviewers at Cars.com appreciate the external styling treatment, claiming that "the Mariner is a congenial-looking rig" with its standard "16-inch alloy wheels."
Inside, materials and appointments were extensively upgraded a few years ago, giving the Mariner pair both matte metallic accents and a two-tiered instrument panel. The interior of the Mercury Mariner gets neutral to positive marks in the reviews read by TheCarConnection.com. Edmunds sees it in a positive light, praising the "upscale ambiance" inside the Mercury Mariner. Cars.com says "the dashboard's contemporary shapes and angled surfaces look interesting enough, but there's a tactile severity that permeates the whole interior."